Leeds West Academy

Our New Staff

 Leeds West Academy People

"Our teachers and support staff are the most important people of the moment - because they inspire and drive forward the leaders of tomorrow." - Andrew Whitaker, Executive Principal, White Rose Academies Trust.


This year, Leeds West Academy is greatly expanding its family of education professionals. We're welcoming outstanding new teachers, in addition to subject specialists and experienced leaders with a record of transformation in education. We're also expanding and enhancing our support services to ensure our school delivers an exceptional service to parents, carers and the local community.

From teachers to technicians, from the classroom to the canteen; all of our staff share the outstanding ability to raise aspirations, unlock potential and secure the best possible future for the young people of Leeds.

Passionate about education. Leading in learning.


Introducing Leeds West Academy's new people of 2017:

Mr Wilcocks - Academy Principal

Senior Leadership

Joined: May 2017

As a Deputy Headteacher, Mr Wilcocks worked closely with Executive Principal Mr Whitaker to transform learning and behaviour at Todmorden High School; taking the school from the bottom 5% of schools nationally, to the top 15% within a three-year period. Since September 2014, Mr Wilcocks has been Principal of Colne Valley High School, leading the school through a period of significant cultural change and improvement.  Central to this has been a drive to improve the quality of teaching and learning with demonstrable results.



Mr Wilcocks is driven by the philosophy that every young person, regardless of their background, should make progress in every lesson and benefit from exceptional teaching, consistently high standards and shared high expectations. He adds: “The students of Leeds West deserve the greatest of opportunities for success to enable them to compete in an increasingly competitive world. As a school leader with the highest of standards, I will never be satisfied with mediocrity. I am duty-bound to ensure the young people in my care graduate fully prepared for adult life. We must be secure in the knowledge that we did everything we could to enable our students to be the best they can be. This starts with having the highest expectations of our students, of ourselves and of each other.”

 

Ms Hanson - Director of English

English Department

Joining: September 2017

Ms Hanson has been an English teacher since 2001 and joins Leeds West Academy after seven years as a successful Curriculum Leader and two years as a member of the Senior Leadership Team. She believes strongly in the transformative power of education on young lives and is committed to creating an environment where students and staff enjoy lessons and are able to reach their full potential. Ms Hanson has a passion for dancing and can often be seen on stage in productions. In any spare time she is a keen baker and is always immersed in a novel. She also loves being with her husband, grown up son and three cats.

Ms Rai - Director of Science

Science Department

Joining: September 2017

Ms Rai achieved her PGCE in Science in 2002 at Leeds University. This was after a six-year career as a Senior Technologist. Ms Rai has had many roles in her career such as HOD, Learning Zone Director as well as more recently Associate Director of Science at Outwood Grange Academies Trust. She also successfully qualified as a Senior Leader in Education in 2013. Ms Rai has worked as part of many leadership teams. Her positions have entailed working collaboratively with other Science Directors to enable outstanding teaching, learning and leadership consistently within the Trust. Ms Rai has led science departments to achieve outstanding results through careful monitoring, tracking pupil progress as well as building capacity within her teams.

Science is all about exciting students to learn about the natural world around them through curiosity and observations. Ms Rai is committed to developing science departments that engage, enthuse and motivate young learners to ensure they achieve their full potential.

Ms Page - Teacher of English & Literacy Co-ordinator

English Department

Joining: September 2017

Ms Page has been teaching for 18 years at Secondary Schools in both West and South Yorkshire. She has specialist expertise in literacy and values the importance of high standards to enable all students to achieve their potential. In her spare time, she is a foundation governor at a local primary school and also enjoys attending theatre and music concerts. Ms Page is looking forward to joining Leeds West Academy and very much looking forward to the challenges it will bring.

Ms Davies - Lead Practitioner of KS4 English

English Department

Joining: September 2017

Ms Davies graduated from The University of Derby with a BA Hons in English Literature. Following this, she progressed from Teacher of English to Head of Department in Derbyshire. She has examined AQA a level language and led teachers across the county in Teaching Spoken Language. In her spare time, she attends creative writing courses and is currently working on her own collection of work.

Mr Roberts - Head of ICT, Computing & Business

Technology Department

Joining: September 2017

Mr Roberts studied ICT and Secondary Education at Sunderland University and graduated in 2012. After graduating, Mr Roberts began working at Cockburn School teaching ICT and Business Studies. Mr Roberts took upon the role of Lead Teacher of Computer Science and introduced the subject at Cockburn School. After a year, Mr Roberts worked as Assistant Leader of ICT, Computing & Business at Cockburn School and is looking forward to inspiring students at Leeds West Academy in September within these 3 subjects. Mr Roberts is an experienced exam marker for OCR having marked for several years for ICT and Computing qualifications.

Mr Leonard - Behaviour Support

Support

Joined: October 2016

Mr Leonard has joined LWA having gained work experience within several employments sectors including customer service, childcare, training, construction, sport and further education. As a mature student, Mr Leonard has recently graduated from Leeds Beckett University having completed a Sports Coaching Degree and Masters in Sports and Exercise Psychology. He has a keen interest in most sports and enjoys helping students to succeed in life. If you ever see him without a smile on his face, please take a moment to make him smile.

Ms Crow - Teacher of Science

Science Department

Joining: September 2017

Ms Crow graduated from the University of Leeds with a degree in Microbiology before going on to complete teacher training. After 10 years at Allerton Grange, she decided it was time for a change and is now returning to Leeds West Academy where she previously worked as a Teaching Assistant. Ms Crow is passionate about making Science as practical as possible and looks forward to working with the students within the Academy.

Ms Kilburn - Advanced Skills Teacher for English 

English Department

Joining: September 2017

Ms Kilburn graduated from The University of Liverpool with a BA (Hons) in English Literature and Language before completing a PGCE at Leeds Trinity University College. Following three years at Colne Valley High School as an NQT and then KS3 Coordinator for English, Ms Kilburn has joined the White Rose Academies Trust as an AST across the trust while being based at LWA. Ms Kilburn endeavours to deliver a rigorous and enjoyable curriculum for all with the aim to enable students to achieve the best that they can achieve. In her spare time Ms Kilburn enjoys cinema, television and baking.

Mr Hussain - English as an Additional Language Teacher

EAL Department

Joining: September 2017

Having trained in English Language instruction, Mr Hussain made the decision to teach English internationally for the initial part of his teaching career which saw him lead English language acquisition in schools in Asia, Europe and the USA before returning to Cambridge where he completed his English Assessor training. His love for food, travel and photography has influenced his choice of destinations and his passion for the Sciences and Technology permeates through his context driven teaching approach. Mr Hussain has taught English students and international students and is a mentor to young learners instilling vision and ambition through the art of communication.

Mr Higgin - Teacher of Maths

Maths Department

Joining: July 2017

Mr Higgin graduated from the University of Leeds with a BSc in Mathematics. He worked briefly in finance before beginning teacher training, and has spent time at both Leeds West Academy and Leeds City Academy over the past year. He joins LWA full-time from July 2017. In his spare time, Mr Higgin enjoys playing football and watching Burnley FC, where he is a season ticket holder.

Ms Parker - Teacher of Maths

Maths Department

Joined: February 2017

Ms Parker graduated from Aberystwyth University in 2002 with a BSc in Economics. In 2004 she completed her PGCE in Maths at Trinity and All Saints in Leeds. Since then she has taught at three different schools across the city. In her spare time Ms Parker enjoys riding her mountain bike and being with her family.

Ms Cusack - Teacher of Sociology and Psychology

Humanities Department

Joining: September 2017

Ms Cusack is a graduate of Glasgow University, where she studied History, Sociology and Politics. She completed an additional year to gain an MA in Post-Soviet Politics. She then went onto the University of Lancaster to complete her Post Graduate Teaching Qualification in History and Citizenship and has now been teaching for 14 years. During this time Ms Cusack has taught a variety of Humanities and Social Science subjects across all age groups; including History, Geography, RE, General Studies, Sociology and Psychology. She has over the last few years become more specialist in the field of Social Science and now also works as an examiner for AQA, marking A-Level Sociology scripts.

Mr Boulton - Progress Leader

Humanities Department

Joining: September 2017

Mr Boulton graduated from the University of Hull in 2001 and began teaching as an instructor in 2003. He successfully completed the Graduate Teacher Programme and gained QTS in 2006. Following five years as a Geography teacher in 2008, he took up the post of Head of PSHCE and subsequently Head of Philosophy and Ethics in North Lincolnshire and moved into the post of Year 9 Progress Leader in 2015. Mr Boulton joins Leeds West Academy with a clear vision to raise standards and support the students fulfil their potential and achieve their goals. In his spare time Mr Boulton enjoys time with his family and runs the local Cub Scout Group.

Ms Broadbent - Teacher Development Coordinator

Whole School

Joining: September 2017

Ms Broadbent has been an English teacher since 2008 and joins Leeds West Academy having had a variety of roles, including Lead Practitioner of Teaching and Learning, Assistant Faculty Leader and, most recently, Professional Mentor for ITT/NQT/RQT. She is a passionate advocate for the power of coaching and mentoring and is thrilled to be bringing this experience to the Trust. Ms Broadbent is an effervescent character who likes to live life to the full; it is not unusual to find her exploring the Calder Valley countryside, frequenting food fayres to aid her passion for cooking or building schools in various parts of Africa.

Ms Clarke - Teacher of English

English Department

Joining: September 2017

Ms Clarke graduated from the University of Warwick with a degree in English and American Literature. Since completing her Post Graduate Certificate of Education in 2005, she has worked in a variety of positions in the south of England, most recently as a very successful Director of English in a large comprehensive school in Bedfordshire. After taking a sabbatical year to travel the world, Ms Clarke is looking forward to getting back into the classroom and is excited by her new role at Leeds West Academy, where she hopes her passion and innovative approaches will ensure she can make a real difference to the students she teaches.

Ms Cunningham - Teacher of English

English Department

Joining: September 2017

Ms Cunningham graduated from Leeds Metropolitan University in 2002 after completing a BA (Hons) Teaching Studies [Specialising in IT and English] degree. After graduating Mrs Cunningham worked in schools mainly centred around the Bradford area and has spent time training and teaching in a specialist provision school for students with SEBD needs. Ms Cunningham has also coordinated English and has been assistant director on English and Literacy. Mrs Cunningham spent most of her childhood growing up in Africa and still enjoys visiting her childhood home and many other countries around the world. She is looking forward to joining the Leeds West Academy community and teaching in the English department.

Mr Sharp - Progress Leader

Mathematics Department

Joining: September 2017

Mr Sharp graduated from Leicester University in 2012 with a BSc in Politics and Economics, completing his PGCE in Mathematics at SHU in 2013. He joined Mercia Learning Trust teaching at their flagship school King Ecgbert’s, in the highly successful Maths Department which was rated in the top 2% nationally. He then transferred to Newfield, another school in the trust, to support the achievement of their transformation from “requires improvement”, which was realised in less than two years. In addition to striving for excellence in Maths teaching, Mr Sharp sought out extra pastoral responsibilities by monitoring progress and implementing interventions. He is passionate in supporting all aspects of school performance; he was involved in coaching the school football team to win the Sheffield cup and to reach the quarter finals of the national cup. In his spare time Mr Sharp enjoys watching and taking part in sport and music.

Ms Hardy - Teacher of Business Studies

Humanities Department

Joining: September 2017

Ms Hardy graduated from Leeds Metropolitan University with a degree in Business and Management. She then enjoyed working as a Marketing and Sales Manager where she was able to develop her web design and SEO skills by attending various different courses. Miss Hardy then completed a teacher training course at Leeds Trinity University. Miss Hardy joins Leeds West in September 2017 with the vision of giving all students great opportunities to learn and participate in school life. In her spare time, Miss Hardy works as a Cheerleading coach and enjoys helping her team achieve their goals.

Ms Hastings - Teacher of Geography

Humanities Department

Joining: September 2017

Ms Hastings completed a BSc in Geography at Aberystwyth University in 2015. The following year she graduated from Birmingham University, completing her teaching qualification. She has spent time teaching Geography and RE, as well as helping to support fieldwork and Duke of Edinburgh expeditions. In her spare time, Miss Hastings enjoys singing with a community choir and walking in the Welsh mountains.

Ms Thorneycroft - Teacher of Spanish

MFL Department

Joined: June 2017

Ms Thorneycroft holds a degree in Spanish from the University of Leeds and has recently completed her PGCE having trained as a part of Leeds West Academy since January. Miss Thorneycroft has lived and taught in both Spain and Italy, and is now learning French in addition to the languages she already knows. Miss Thorneycroft loves travelling as it allows her collect exciting souvenirs and bring the culture into the classroom. Her dream in life is to visit all Seven Wonders of the World - and she’s already done two!

Ms Hale - Teacher of English

English Department

Joining: September 2017

Ms Hale graduated from Edge Hill University in 2013 with a degree in English and Drama. After finishing her Post Graduate Certificate in Education she completed her Masters in Education during her first year of teaching. Ms Hale joins Leeds West Academy with a vision of securing positive progress and outcome for all students. In her spare time, she enjoys attending amateur and professional theatre productions around the UK.


Ms Arthurs - Teacher of Science & Lead Professional for Computing

Science Department

Joined: April 2017

Ms Arthurs has been teaching now for 15 years at a number of schools across Leeds. She has taught mainly Science and was Head of Department for ICT, Computing and Digital Media for over a decade. She has also had the role of Lead Practitioner, for Computing, for the Leeds Learning Partnership (formally Education Leeds). Ms Arthurs' Master Degree focussed on Disadvantaged Pupils and she gained experience in Teacher Research and Progress Interventions. She is a member of many sporting clubs, climbing, MMA, swimming, aerial silks/hoop, rounders, scuba diving, running and hiking, where she trains with her 11-year-old son. They were very proud to receive their Black Belts in MMA (Mixed Martial Arts) in March this year. She enjoys live music and the cinema.

Ms Wiseman - Teacher of Art

Art Department

Joined: April 2017

Ms Wiseman is a graduate of the University of Leeds with a Post Graduate Certificate in Education from UCL Institute of Education. She joins Leeds West Academy as a Newly Qualified Teacher with the view to further developing her teaching practice. Ms Wiseman strives to contribute to the creation of an Art curriculum that encourages young people to take an interest in the world around them, whilst teaching them skills and attributes, which they will be able to transfer into their personal and professional lives. In her spare time Ms Wiseman is actively involved in Girl Guiding UK, and works in a leadership team to plan and deliver a weekly programme of exciting and educational activities to girls aged 10-16, as well as regular outings and camps.

Ms Hart - Teacher of Maths

Maths Department

Joined: September 2017

After graduating from Leeds Beckett University in 1999, Ms Hart has spent most of her teaching career in Bradford teaching PE and Maths at Laisterdyke Leadership Academy. Ms Hart first embarked on an achievement role as part of the extended leadership team in 2008, and is very passionate about students reaching their full potential – a key focus of her role at Leeds West Academy. In 2011, Ms Hart completed a Masters in Education with the Open University. Outside of school, Ms Hart is heavily involved in the West Yorkshire senior netball league in both a playing and umpiring capacity.

Ms Morris - Teacher of Geography

Humanities Department

Joined: April 2017

Ms Morris graduated from the University of Chester in 2012 with a degree in BSc Geography and International Development. Her passion for education and Geography has always been apparent; she has taught Geography working with a charity in rural Tanzania and is looking forward to inspiring students closer to home in Leeds. Ms Morris' fundamental aim is to ensure that every student is given the education they deserve. She loves to travel and this has taken her to the heights of Kilimanjaro and the ancient city of Rome.

Ms Spencer - Teacher of Technology

Technology Department

Joined: April 2017

Ms Spencer studied Fashion design at Bradford College, School of Art, graduating in 2008. This is her first teaching role after completing a PGCE qualification with The Gorse SCITT. Prior t, teaching she ran her own fashion design and manufacture business, undertaking projects for various companies. Although her subject specialism is textiles, she will be teaching across all the materials areas of Technology at Leeds West Academy.

Mr Norton - Performing Arts Specialism Technician

Performing Arts Department

Joined: January 2017

Mr Norton studied Performing Arts at Harrogate College from 2005-2007. In 2011 he graduated from the University of Huddersfield with a degree in Popular Music Production & Studio Engineering. Since then he has worked in various recording studios and taught music in primary schools, both alongside a 9-year part-time career as a DJ. Adam is from an educational background with both his mother and sister being a Head Teacher and Head of Maths respectively. He joins Leeds West Academy with a wealth of knowledge in the subject area and aims to apply his skills and experience to improve the Performing Arts department within the school, with a special focus on school productions and providing technical support for the wide variety of events held in the Academy Theatre.

Mr Birkmyre - Art & English Technician

Art & English Department

Joined: January 2017

Mr Birkmyre graduated from the Glasgow School of Art with a BA (Hons) in Fine Art, 2009. Since then he has taken part in several group exhibitions where he joined an art performance and theatrical group in which he performed, designed and made sets as well as props for audience immersive productions. During this time, he was manager of a tourist information and courier company. In 2015, he completed a two-year HND course in Furniture Restoration from the City of Glasgow College and received second prize in the National Skill Build competition for furniture making. For the last three years, Mr Birkmyre has run his own restoration and furniture creation business completing commissioned works, as well as selling his own renovations, restorations and original furniture designs. In joining Leeds West Academy Mr Birkmyre plans to share his enthusiasm for practical projects with the next generation of creative minds.

Ms Brady - Academy Nurse

Pastoral

Joined: January 2017

Nurse Brady qualified as a Registered Paediatric Nurse in September 2001 having obtained her nursing degree from the University of Bradford. Since qualification, she has worked in a variety of NHS clinical settings including medical, surgical, paediatric assessment unit and neonatal care across the West Yorkshire region. In September 2011 Ms Brady began working as a school nurse in Bradford; this role included working in both primary and secondary schools across the district. Post qualification, she has completed various elements of postgraduate study including mental health and emotional wellbeing, medical law, bereavement and adolescent health and wellbeing.

Ms Boddy - Employability / Finance Assistant

Administration Department

Joined: January 2017

As a former student of Leeds West Academy, Ms Boddy has over 4 years’ experience of working in a School Office Environment. She has completed her Level 2 and 3 NVQ Apprenticeship in Business and Administration. In her spare time, she is working towards a part-time Foundation Degree in Leadership and Management. Upon completing, Ms Boddy has plans to complete the BA Hons Top-up in Business and Management. Her goal is to become a School Business Manager.